The Fascist Assault

Trump and Barr Threaten "Anarchist Jurisdiction" Cities with Funding Cut-offs… Florida Governor Pushes New Anti-Protest Laws and Punishments… Regime Opens Alaska Wilderness to Unfettered Plunder



The Trump/Pence regime is moving rapidly, aggressively, and in many dimensions to develop and implement fascism. Below are some recent measures taken by the regime and other fascist forces, or that came to light in recent weeks.

Trump and Barr Threaten to Put a Chokehold on Cities Declared to Be “Anarchist Jurisdictions”

On September 2, Donald Trump issued a memorandum declaring that “anarchy has recently beset some of our States and cities.” He mentioned Portland, Seattle, and New York in particular, as besieged by “violence and destruction.” Trump threatened that his regime “will not allow Federal tax dollars to fund cities that allow themselves to deteriorate into lawless zones.”

On September 21, Trump’s attorney general William Barr announced that, after an “investigation” mandated by Trump’s memorandum, the Department of “Justice” (DOJ) he heads is designating those three cities as “jurisdictions permitting violence and destruction of property.” He threatened to remove federal funding from them. The amount Barr is threatening to withhold is not clear, but New York City alone receives about $7 billion in federal aid each year. Barr said, “It is my hope that the cities identified by the Department of Justice today will reverse course and become serious about performing the basic function of government and start protecting their own citizens.”

In fact, police forces in these cities, as in cities and towns across the country, have been brutalizing and arresting hundreds of people. The threats to these cities by Trump and Barr are integral to inflicting even more ferocious repression of mass protests and uprisings against police murder and brutality, and other atrocities of the fascist regime.

Punishing, silencing, and disempowering Democratic Party opponents who stand in the way of consolidating fascism is also one of the primary focuses of the Trump/Pence regime. All three of the cities targeted by Barr are led by Democratic mayors. Sending federal storm troopers to these cities, as Trump did in Portland, and threatening to cut off federal funding—these are not “cheap political games” as the mayors of the three cities declared in a joint letter to Trump. They are part of a deadly serious and rapidly escalating effort by the fascist regime to crush and suppress all opposition, including that within the ranks of the ruling class and its political representatives.

Time is short and the need is urgent. The Trump/Pence regime must be driven from power before it fully consolidates fascism.

Sending federal storm troopers to Democratic run cities, as Trump did in Portland (above), and threatening to cut off federal funding are part of a deadly serious and rapidly escalating effort by the fascist regime to crush and suppress all opposition, including that within the ranks of the ruling class and its political representatives. Photo: AP



Department of Justice Identifies New York City, Portland And Seattle As Jurisdictions Permitting Violence And Destruction Of Property,” September 21, 2020, U.S. Department of Justice

Memorandum on Reviewing Funding to State and Local Government Recipients That Are Permitting Anarchy, Violence, and Destruction in American Cities,” September 2, 2020, White

DoJ labels New York, Portland and Seattle ‘anarchist jurisdictions’,” the Guardian, September 21, 2020

DOJ names New York, Portland, and Seattle ‘anarchist jurisdictions’ that could lose federal funding,” USA Today, September 21, 2020

Has the Amount of Federal Aid to New York Changed Over the Past Five Years?” New York City Independent Budget Office

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Fascist Florida Governor Proposes Harsh New Laws and Punishments Against Protesters

On September 21, Florida’s fascist governor Ron DeSantis, a close ally of the Trump/Pence regime, announced a proposal for a highly repressive and punitive series of anti-protest laws. DeSantis, surrounded by a posse of about a dozen high-ranking cops from across Florida, said, “I look at what goes on in Portland and they’ll have people, they’ll arrest them. These are scraggly looking Antifa types. They get their mugshot taken and then they get released. And it’s like a carousel and on and on it goes. This is a very robust package. I think what it’s saying is we are not going to let Florida go down the road that some of these other places have gone.”

DeSantis’s proposal would, among other things, make felonies out of “participation” in an assembly that allegedly causes damage to property or injury to people, or “destroy(s) or toppl(es) monuments.” It makes “obstructing roadways” a third-degree felony—but says motorists who drive into a protest are “NOT liable for injury or death caused if fleeing for safety from a mob.” It says that anyone convicted of “organize(ing) or fund(ing) a violent or disorderly assembly” would risk liability under Florida’s RICO (racketeering) law—which could make it a first-degree felony punishable by up to 30 years in state prison. Other measures would mandate minimum sentences and “offense enhancements” for people arrested at protests and prevent people convicted of participating in what is determined under this fascist law to be a “violent or disorderly assembly” from receiving state benefits like unemployment and food stamps.

DeSantis’ proposals are intended to intimidate people from mounting meaningful protest against rampaging, murderous police, and other outrages of developing fascism. They will give a green light to, and exonerate in advance, vigilantes who assault protesters with their vehicles. They will provide prosecutors and police with the ability to inflict much more severe punishment than now on anyone arrested at a protest they claim is “violent.” They are not yet law, but DeSantis wants to send them to the Florida legislature in November. And if they become law, they will be part of accelerating efforts by the Trump/Pence regime and their adherents in state and local governments across the country to consolidate fascism.

If Governor DeSantis gets his way, vigilantes who assault protesters with their vehicles, like the one shown here in Los Angeles September 25, would be exonerated in advance.

Many people in Florida have expressed outrage and opposition to DeSantis’ Nazi proposal. This outrage must become manifest as protest in the streets that are part of a massive, sustained, nonviolent nationwide outpouring beginning on October 3, united by the demand “Trump/Pence, OUT NOW!”



Combatting Violence, Disorder and Looting and Law Enforcement Protection Act,” State of Florida

Florida’s RICO Act,” Sammis Law Firm

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis calls for legislation aimed at cracking down on disorderly protests,” CNN, September 21, 2020

Florida protest laws could be harshest in nation under DeSantis proposal,” Orlando Sentinel, September 23, 2020

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Trump Opens Alaska Wilderness to Capitalist Plunder

The opening up of Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling and mining poses a threat to many species including polar bears, porcupine caribou (seen here) and hundreds of migratory birds.

The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) is the largest and most pristine wilderness area remaining in the United States. Its 19 million acres are a place of indescribable beauty and biodiversity. For 10,000 years it has been a home to Native peoples. Wild areas like the ANWR are fast disappearing, in the U.S. and around the world.

On August 17, Trump took the final step in authorizing oil and gas leasing on 1.56 million acres of ANWR’s coastal plain, a change that would transform the region and pose a threat to many of its unique species and put huge amounts of planet-warming carbon into the atmosphere. Within months, trucks weighing up to 90,000 pounds could be conducting tests across the tundra trying to identify oil reserves. Once the land is leased to oil companies, it will be very difficult legally to return them to their previous protected status.

ANWR is not the only wilderness area in Alaska being targeted. One of the first actions when Trump took office was to overturn a ban on drilling off the north Alaska coast. Trump is currently pushing to allow work to begin at the Pebble Mine—a huge open-pit, gold, molybdenum, and copper mine—in Bristol Bay, one of the most important wild salmon fisheries on the planet.

The opening up of ANWR poses a threat to many species including polar bears, Porcupine caribou, and migratory birds. Because the natural world is made up of ecosystems, webs of life interacting with each other and their physical environment, the loss of any of these species threatens to disrupt the whole system in unpredictable ways.

Polar bears, for example, are an endangered species that migrate to ANWR every year. Climate change has already drastically affected their lives. Melting sea ice has made it much more difficult for the polar bears, which do most of their hunting from ice blocks to find food. Drilling in ANWR will make this much worse. Pregnant polar bears dig winter dens in the snow on the coastal plain. The mothers and their newborn cubs could be disturbed or endangered by the heavy trucks or the sonar that the government and oil companies will use in the areas where the bears hibernate. An oil spill would have a devastating effect on the bears. If oil gets in their fur it decreases its ability to keep the bear warm. The bear would need to eat more to make up for the lost energy, and the bears are already finding it difficult to get the food they need.

Porcupine caribou travel over 1,500 miles, the longest migration by any land mammal, to the ANWR coastal plain, where they give birth. Their calving grounds are in the area targeted for drilling. If the caribou are forced to move, the mothers and their young will be much more vulnerable to predators.

The Porcupine caribou are central to the cultural and spiritual identity of the Gwich’in nation. Their 300 villages trace the route of the caribou. They rely on the caribou for food, their clothing is made from caribou skins, soap is made from caribou fat, and drums are made from their hides. For the Gwich’in nation, the fight to stop drilling in ANWR is a struggle for their way of life, their culture, and their existence, and they have been in the forefront of resisting drilling in ANWR.

Close to a million birds representing over 200 species make their home for at least part of the year in ANWR. According to the Audubon Society, “Migratory birds are very sensitive to any changes in their environment. If seasonal habitat is compromised in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, those impacts will cascade throughout migratory corridors, from South America to the Gulf Coast to the Great Plains of North America.”

Nineteen million acres of spectacular, unspoiled nature, unique species with amazing stories, one of the last truly wild areas left on the planet, ecosystems that have evolved over millions of years. All of this Trump is aiming to destroy. These are things which cannot be replaced. Once a species is extinct, it is gone forever.

To capitalism, wild areas like ANWR are of no value unless they are being exploited for their resources or turned into sites for tourism. Driven by cutthroat competition and a drive for profit, this system cannot deal with the environment in a sustainable and rational way. The Christian fascists, who are at the core of the Trump/Pence regime, make subjugating the Earth and ravaging the environment not only an economic imperative (which they fervently endorse) but beyond that a mandate from God. Ralph Drollinger, head of Capitol Ministries, has written, “In God’s hierarchy of creation man is atop and is to rule over all of creation and subdue it (Genesis 1:25 & 28).” Drollinger leads Bible study sessions sponsored and attended by 12 current and former members of Trump’s cabinet.

Trump is breaking with the “normal” environmental destruction of capitalist society by brutally unleashing and unfettering the forces of capitalism to plunder the environment in a qualitatively more destructive way—leading this planet toward environmental catastrophe that threatens all living things.

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An Impending Disaster and an Urgent Challenge

The above are just some of the damage done by the fascist Trump/Pence regime in the recent period! The consequences to humanity and the planet if this regime remains in power through whatever means worsen daily, and will be disastrous if this fascist juggernaut isn’t stopped.

As Bob Avakian wrote in his August 1 Statement:

Right now, for everyone who is concerned with ending injustice and oppression, and with the question of whether humanity will have a future worth living—or will have a future at all—removing the Trump/Pence fascist regime from power is an immediate, urgent question and truly historic imperative.



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